December 6th, 2021
In a very interesting article in the Atlantic, a group of writers discuss life with kids in a COVID endemic world. Here is a snippet: "Becca Rosen: I’ve been trying to make the case among my friends and to colleagues that getting COVID is not a sign of personal failure. We live in a society with illness, and we don’t blame people when they get flu. We have to learn to not see getting COVID as a moral failure. Because this is something we have to live with, and the truth is that we will all be exposed.
To go back to what Julie was saying, the practical disruption of a COVID infection to people’s lives is so much worse than with RSV or with flu because of the policies we have in place. So it seems like we’re in a spot where we really, really do need to update our policies for a COVID-endemic world. Especially with our testing infrastructure still really dysfunctional, even testing negative to return to school after a COVID exposure can mean days out of work for a parent. For a lot of parents, that’s just not tenable." (Laskow S. 2021)
This article goes a long way to highlight the frustrations of many working parents in the new world of COVID testing to return to school. Missing a few days every time a child has the sniffles while we wait for a COVID result is difficult and highly frustrating. This entire reality encourages people to not discuss any symptoms other than fever with a day care or school in order to avoid the obligatory 2-3 days at home waiting on the PCR result. We have seen this frustration play out over and over again in our clinic. It is real. The policies will need to change lest we live in constant disruption of education for our children and work for the adults.
What we need is faster and more reliable testing measures in school or daycare or at home to help reduce risk transmission. We need some sense of normalcy.
On the topic of normalcy, Sarah Zhang wrote a piece on returning to life in an endemic COVID world. She makes many of the same points that Monika Ghandi makes. We need to curtail our public policy.